MIDDLEBURY, Vt. — The Middlebury Board of Trustees, at its annual meeting on May 13-14, approved a budget of $272.6 million for fiscal year 2017, which begins on July 1, 2016. That represents a one percent increase over the current fiscal year budget, the smallest percentage increase in seven years.*

The budget encompasses the operations of Middlebury College, the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, Middlebury Language Schools, Middlebury C.V. Starr Schools Abroad, Middlebury School of the Environment, Middlebury Bread Loaf School of English and Middlebury Bread Loaf Writers’ Conferences.

Upon recommendation of the Resources Committee, the Board also granted approval for a future bond refinancing of approximately $55 million. The refinancing could potentially save Middlebury $16 million in cash payments over the life of the bonds, with a net present value savings of about $7 million.

The board also approved tenure recommendations for six members of the College faculty, effective July 1:

  • Leticia Arroyo Abad, Associate Professor, Economics
  • Mario Higa, Associate Professor, Portuguese
  • Marta Manrique-Gomez, Associate Professor, Spanish
  • Marybeth Nevins, Associate Professor, Sociology-Anthropology
  • Edward Vazquez, Associate Professor, History of Art
  • Linda White, Associate Professor, Japanese

The trustees began their meeting on Friday with a tour of the student residential complex still under construction near Adirondack View on the west side of campus. The three townhouses and residential hall, which will house 158 students in all, will be ready for occupancy in September.

In committee meetings Friday morning, trustees discussed a number of topics and initiatives, including:

  • A draft of a new Middlebury intellectual property policy intended to support faculty creativity while providing for institutional recognition in instances of significant institutional investment.
  • An update on the Envisioning Middlebury strategic planning process that began this spring and will continue through next summer.
  • A review of academic technologies in use across the institution and the need for increased focus on those with the growth of online experiences.
  • A plan to bring greater organizational focus to the College’s numerous engaged-learning initiatives, which include MiddCORE, the Programs on Creativity and Innovation (PCI) and the Center for Social Entrepreneurship, beginning in the fall of 2016
  • Recent or ongoing administrative reviews of the Middlebury College Museum of Art and Middlebury’s Information Technology Services organization.
  • A review of health and safety recommendations and laboratory safety protocols for the science facilities in Bicentennial Hall.
  • An update on the legal and regulatory landscape relating to issues of access and compliance for individuals with disabilities and on the approaches Middlebury is taking toward increasing access and improving related services.
  • Progress toward meeting the institution’s sustainability goals, including its carbon neutrality goal on the campus.
  • A review of emerging classroom, laboratory, and faculty space needs on the campus in light of the growth of course enrollments at the College in certain departments.
  • A regular review of the performance of the endowment and the current investment strategy of Investure, Middlebury’s investment manager.

At the boards of overseers meetings in the afternoon, topics of discussion included:

  • Extending and deepening the College’s global focus.
  • More productively engaging with the local and regional community on initiatives that drive investment and employment.
  • A review of the efforts undertaken this year to achieve greater diversity and foster a climate of greater inclusivity at the College, including work at the Anderson Freeman Resource Center, the expansion of the JusTalks program to all students, and an initiative to increase participation in experiential learning programs.
  • Establishing new faculty governance procedures at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey.
  • An update on the Master Plan for the Institute campus in Monterey.
  • Enrollment updates for summer programs at the Language Schools, Bread Loaf School of English, and School of the Environment.
  • Potential curricular changes at the MA programs in the Language Schools.

At the full board meeting Saturday morning, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Schools Jeff Cason gave trustees an operational overview of the Middlebury C.V. Starr Schools Abroad, including growth in the number of sites since the year 2000, and the provisions the institution has in place to respond to crises or emergency situations that might arise in any of the 17 countries with Schools Abroad campuses.

In other business, the board approved a revision to the bylaws of the corporation, changing the name of the New Programs Committee to the Programs Committee and broadening its charter to include consideration of new as well as existing programs.

The board chose a new slate of officers for the 2016-2017 year beginning July 1. Kim Collins Parizeau ’79 was elected to a three-year term as chair. Allan Dragone Jr. ’78, John Tormondsen ’82, and John Weinberg will serve as vice chairs.

The trustees elected six new members to the board for five-year terms and three current board members to new five-year terms, all starting July 1.

The new members are Belinda L. Badcock Brito P ’18 P ‘20.5 (Term Trustee), G. “Parker” Harris ’89 (Term Trustee), Lucienne M. Ide ’97 (Alumni Trustee), Suzanne Reider ’87, P ’19 (Term Trustee), Mark D. Spence ’98 (Term Trustee), and Kashif Zafar ’92 (Term Trustee).

Trustee Catherine Lee ’92 was appointed to a second five-year term.

The board also honored five outgoing trustees whose terms will end on June 30, including: Louis M. Bacon ’79, Charles M. Gately ’62, and Susan J. Scher ’86 who each completed 10 years of service; Carol Levitch completed a five-year term.

This was also the final meeting for Board Chair Marna C. Whittington, who has served on the board for 17 years—the last four as chair.

Trustee Emeritus and former board chair Rick Fritz ’68 read the board minute honoring Whittington for her service.

The Middlebury Board of Trustees will meet next from Sept. 29 to Oct. 1.

* The FY2017 budget figure for expenditures reflects an accounting change. In previous years the institution accounted for financial aid costs as a budgetary expense. Starting with next year’s budget, the amount of financial aid granted will be treated as a reduction in revenue.